Takashi Tsunemi, managing director of the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) in Egypt said that his office is following up on the Chairperson Hiroyuki Ishige’s latest visit to Egypt.
Tsunemi told Daily News Egypt that the chairperson’s visit proposed three actions, which are expanding investment opportunities through business-to-business meetings, innovation exchange, and exports promotion.
“We are still under the consideration in the details of following up on chairperson’s visit,” mentioned Tsunemi, noting that major Japanese companies are actively participating in the Egyptian government projects.
In April, Ishige paid Egypt an official visit, where he met with President Abdel Fattah Al- Sisi, former Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, and former Trade Minister Tarek Kabil.
Tsunemi expected that Japanese firms will participate in some Egyptian projects in several sectors, such as energy, subways, and roads.
He noted that there are some challenges in the Egyptian business environment, such as taking time to import procedures. However, the major issue related to the foreign currency shortage was solved.
Tsunemi reaffirmed that JETRO will promote strengthening relations between Japan and Egypt, adding, “many Japanese companies have hope for the future potential of Egypt.”
The market is quite large and the foreign exchange reserves that had been a worry were also resolved, said Tsunemi, adding “recently venture companies by young entrepreneurs are making a breakthrough, hence there is a possibility of interaction with Japanese small and medium enterprises with technical skills.”
In February, media reports said that Japan’s trade with Egypt continued to decline for the second year in a row to record $878.322m, from January to November 2017, compared to $1.199bn in the same period of 2016, and $1.335bn, during the same period of 2015.
According to statistics prepared by the Japanese customs authority, Egypt ranked 86th on the list of the top exporting countries to Japan, while it ranked 51st in terms of the biggest importers, during the first 11 months of last year.
JETRO is a Japanese government-related organization that promotes trade and investment, JETRO Cairo was first established in 1955 with the aim of promoting trade between Japan and the Middle East and North African countries. JETRO Cairo is in charge of Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Libya, and Sudan.